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The Year of the Rat(s)


Fri, Dec 28th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Some last minute thoughts as we enter 2008, or in the Chinese lexicon, the Year of the Rat.

• There is one year left of the Bush - Cheney junta. They introduced the world to such noble concepts as rendition, torture (think waterboarding), and in the case of Guantanamo, imprisonment without due process. (Notice how all those terrorists held at Guantanamo are being quietly sent back to their home countries, rather than go through the human rights charade of military tribunals).

• A friend of mine and I have a standing argument that there is no difference between the Democrats in charge of Congress or Republicans. I think the two parties are symbiotic in a parasitical kind of way - they both need each other to survive. The two party system may be the biggest challenge to the American experiment with democracy. My friend argues that Democrats offer hope. I remind him that one year after the Democrats took control of Congress, we are still spending billions in Iraq and authorizing wire taps of Americans, authorizations passed by a Democratic Congress.

• Bush's alliance of the willing in Iraq is slowly dwindling down to US forces and our paid friends at Blackwater, mercenaries who are answerable to no one. Everyone else has either exited or are in the process of packing their bags. The US plan to engage Saddam's Sunni tribes in restoring peace is working, but it is scaring the beejeesus out of the governing Shiite majority. Remember they were the ones who were victimized by Saddam in the first place. Some pundits predict an Afghanistan-like outcome in Iraq, with warlords controlling various parts of the country. How does that go? The enemy of my enemy is my friend (at least temporarily). Isn't that how Osamma Bin Ladin and the Taliban got their big break in Afghanistan, the CIA arming them to fight the Ruskies?

• So much for peeing into Iran's tent over their nuclear program (and we know how the intelligence on that turned out - wink, wink). Look no farther than Pakistan, further destabilized with the assassination of Bennazir Bhutto, who have live nukes with Bin Laden living in relative comfort in the border regions. If Al Quaida ever gets its hand on a dirty bomb, it will more than likely come from there.

• When the Republicans come high stepping into Minneapolis in September, it will no longer be the party of Lincoln but the home of George Bush and Dick Cheney, a government known for its total inc .....
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Let's hear it for the "City Guys"

Fri, Dec 21st, 2007
Posted in Commentary

We see and hear tributes to our firefighters, police, and emergency responders; they deserve this praise, especially in our small towns where they are often volunteers, risking lives to protect us.

There is another group of folks who merit o ..... 
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Maybe they really are evil

Fri, Dec 14th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Internet chatter in the so called blogosphere is nasty and vitriolic. Main street media is not much better with both major political ideologies demonizing and calling the other evil.

I have been concerned about Bush's intellect and Cheney's ..... 
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So, this is democracy?

Fri, Dec 14th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

The unfortunate thing about living so close to Iowa is the spillover effect of the presidential primary which is held every four years. The white noise emanating from south of our border has been deafening and will only get louder in the next few we ..... 
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Awash in a sea of noise

Fri, Dec 7th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

I never thought I would be agreeing with Spiro Agnew or Dick Cheney, or even G. W. Bush. They and others have over the years railed against the print, radio, and TV media about not sharing what they consider to be the good or accurate news.

..... 
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Henny Penny the sky is falling

Fri, Dec 7th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

A new National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) was released last Monday. There are some astounding facts associated with its findings. They mostly make me believe it will be a long time before other countries will take our word about intelligence findin ..... 
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America, the benevolent dictator

Fri, Nov 30th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Joseph Broz, aka Tito, was one of those more benevolent dictators - using a bit of carrot and stick to hold the ethnic stew known as Yugoslavia together.

"No one questioned 'who is a Serb, who is a Croat, who is a Muslim (Bosniak)', we were ..... 
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If I were a true patriot

Fri, Nov 23rd, 2007
Posted in Commentary

If I were truly patriotic I would be demonstrating on our streets and carrying placards calling for the impeachment of President Bush.

How is it that I can stand by while President Bush has amongst many other things:

Violated the Uni ..... 
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Do the right thing with recycling

Fri, Nov 23rd, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Every day we are faced with the same dilemma: to recycle or not to recycle.

My recent trips to the gas station seem to be pressing this issue on my subconscious mind. I reach down to grab the bag of garbage when I eye a plastic pop bottle sn ..... 
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